GPhC caught up in fresh assessment controversy
By Neil Trainis
The General Pharmaceutical Council has been engulfed in further controversy surrounding its registration assessment after it told candidates who had booked their sitting for this summer’s exam before bookings had officially opened this morning that their place would be cancelled and they would need to rebook.
The regulator, which came under intense scrutiny over its handling of the March 2021 assessment when trainees across the UK were unable to book a place, performed an instant U-turn on its decision to cancel the latest set of bookings. The booking system opened at 10am this morning.
Last night on Twitter, the GPhC said: “We’re aware some candidates were able book a slot today. To make sure access to centres is fair, all bookings made before the scheduled opening time of 10.00am tomorrow (Thursday) will be cancelled and you will need to rebook.”
Moments later, it tweeted: “If you received an email yesterday (Tuesday) about your pre-booked adjustment sitting, this booking will not be cancelled and you do not need to rebook.”
Candidates who tried to book their place this morning also experienced problems with the online booking system run by BTL who replaced Pearson Vue as the assessment provider this year. BTL took the system down as it attempted to resolve the issues, sparking further confusion and frustration among candidates. The GPhC “sincerely” apologised to applicants.
One candidate asked if the system going down meant their booking would be cancelled while another questioned whether they would be forced to travel a long distance to sit the exam if they lost their first choice venue.
Another frustrated candidate tweeted: “One quick tip, when you open the booking again, make it a time when we’re not all at work? I shouldn’t have to neglect my work duties to book a slot…took me over an hour today while in the dispensary and I still don’t have a booking. You can make it easier for us to book!”
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